Thursday, March 17, 2011


Do you remember the good old days when your little bundle of joy was caged into a crib and was unable to venture around the house after hours?

Once the cage comes down undoubtedly the feet will hit the ground. The day your toddler figures out they can get in and out of bed by themselves you might find yourself in a power struggle to keep them in bed at night. Our struggles began when my oldest daughter was 2 years old. She started getting out of bed about 30 minutes after we put her down, and she would attempt to crawl into bed with us. My husband and I would take turns carrying her back to her bed and going through the same ritual time after time. Her ritual consisted of about 5 babydolls being in a specific place and 3 blankets being positioned just right. We would pray with her then say "I love you, good night, i'm watching you, no monsters" everytime we put her in bed. This would happend 4-7 times per night before she would finally stay in bed. To say the least, it was exhausting. If we put her in bed without going through the ritual she would become hysterical.

It seemed more than an " I didn't get my way temper tantrum", and it was concerning. I did alot of reading and found that this is pretty typical of kids her age. I also read it is best to just put your child back in bed without talking to them or giving them extra attention (Too late for that). Research has shown it takes approximately 21-30 days to change a habit or behavior with consistency. My daughter must not have read the research because it took around 2 months of consistency from us to break the cycle.

When our youngest daughter transitioned into her big girl bed we were confident we were ready for her nightime struggles. Sure enough, it took her about one week to figure out she was no longer confined at night. She would come out of her room and into ours. We would put her back in bed without talking to her. This went on for about a month and started getting worse. It got to the point that we would have to sit outside of her door because as soon as we would kiss her goodnight she was right back out of bed. We knew she was tired and definately not getting too much sleep. I tried using incentives with her, another method we tried with our oldest child. We made a sticker chart and if she stayed in bed she would get a sticker the following morning. Didn't work. The only method I found to work was consistently putting her back in bed everytime she got out, and not letting her sleep with us. Sure, it took about 3 months and was absolutely exhausting, but hopefully the problem is now solved forever.

If you are going through this now good luck and don't give up!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

St. Paddy's Day Treats

What's the first thing that comes to mind when you hear St. Paddy's Day? Pretzels, right....maybe not, but here is fun kid-friendly recipe to make with the kiddies.

  • waxed paper
  • 3 yogurt covered mini pretzels
  • 1/4 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup white chocolate chips
  • green icing
  • decorating sugar
  1. To make a batch, cover a work surface with a sheet of waxed paper. For each clover, arrange three yogurt-covered mini pretzels and a pretzel section as shown.
  2. Combine 1/4 teaspoon vegetable oil with 1/4 cup white chocolate chips and melt them together in the microwave according to the chips' package directions. Dab the mixture between the pretzel pieces to adhere them. Let the chocolate harden.
  3. Working with one clover at a time, pipe the edges and stem with green icing (we used a #8 round piping tip), then quickly sprinkle it with decorating sugar (we used white, light green, and dark green).

Friday, March 11, 2011

Winter Blues?

I always struggle this time of year with the winter blues.  The joy of the holiday season has passed but the Ohio weather won't give way to spring. I think the lack of sunshine and flip flops can cause a diagnosable disorder! I always find myself fat because of Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Valentines Day. It's easier to blame the holidays than my eating habits. So this is what I have to make myself do every year to get out of the funk.

First: I have to pick up my exercise routine, not to lose weight necessarily, but just to regain energy. I find a friend and we sign up for a few early spring 5k's. I found that this is a big motivator to get moving.

Second: I have to shop. I don't have a ton of money to blow but even a cute spring top from target seems to lighten my spirits. I usually end up wearing it with a sweater because it is still snowing here in April, but at least I know I have it on!

Third: I spend an afternoon with the little ladies having a beach party at home. We spend the afternoon making fun food that we would take on a picnic and pack up to head for the beach. The beach being our family room and our picnic table being a sheet spread out on the floor. Hey it works! We pass the beach ball around and paint our toenails. They then insist on putting on their bathing suits and getting in the bathtub, but hey whatever works. It always makes me happy.

Fourth: Typically is a fresh haircut, but since i'm trying to let it grow that's not an option this year.

So good luck to you with your winter blues and give me some tips on how you get through the last few weeks of winter...